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Intellectual Property for Teaching and Learning

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In 2009, the University Academic Policy Committee updated Rider's Copyright Policy. The full text of that policy can be found on p. 23 of the current Academic Policy Manual. The policy begins with the following statement of general principle:

Rider University respects and values copyright law and Rider University students, faculty, and staff should understand and fully exercise their fair use right to copyrighted material.

The policy goes on to state the four factors to consider when attempting to determine if a given use of copyrighted material is fair, and then it directs the reader to this page as a resource for helping students, faculty, and staff make those determinations.

Scholars interested in preserving and promoting fair use have composed codes of best practices for specific communities of users. The links below will take you to six recently developed codes of best practices.

  • Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Online Video - The second in a series of "Best Practices" statements from a specific community of practice, online video producers. Addressing the needs of a group perhaps larger and more general than documentary filmmakers, but not quite as large or general as media literacy educators, this code represents a middle stage between the particular and the general.
  • Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Literacy Education - Perhaps the most general in the series of "Best Practice" statements from a specific community of practice, media literacy educators. Addressing the needs of the largest and most general community of practice served so far, this code is likely to have a larger impact upon a greater number of educators and students than any of the other similar statements that preceded it.
  • Documentary Filmmakers' Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use -  The first in a series of "Best Practices" statements produced by the Center for Social Media, it is also the one designed to serve the most specific use community, a community perhaps more put upon than any other by the new climate of increased propertization of culture.
  • The Society for Cinema and Media Studies has published a general “Statement on Fair Use” as well as specific policy statement on “Best Practices for Media Studies Publishing,” “Best Practices for Fair Use in Teaching,” and “Fair Usage Publication of Film Stills.” All of these policy statements can be found here.
  • Statement of Best Practices for Fair Use in Dance-Related Materials - "This Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use clarifies what librarians, archivists, curators, and others working with dance-related materials currently regard as a reasonable application of the Copyright Act's fair use doctrine, where the use of copyrighted materials is essential to significant cultural missions and institutional goals."
  • Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Scholarly Research in Communication - This "code of best practices . . . helps U.S. communication scholars to interpret the copyright doctrine of fair use. . . . This guide identifies four situations that represent the current consensus within the community of communication scholars about acceptable practices for the fair use of copyrighted materials."

In 2002, Congress passed the TEACH Act which, according to the American Library Association, “redefines the terms and conditions on which accredited, nonprofit educational institutions throughout the U.S. may use copyright protected materials in distance education-including on websites and by other digital means--without permission from the copyright owner and without payment of royalties.” (http://www.ala.org/Template.cfm?Section=distanceed)

While the TEACH Act explicitly allows a wide variety of works to be uploaded to Learning Management Systems "in an amount comparable to that which is typically displayed in the course of a live classroom session,” there are two categories of works that are explicitly excluded:
The following materials may not be used:

  • Works that are marketed "primarily for performance or display as part of mediated instructional activities transmitted via digital networks"; and
  • Performances or displays given by means of copies "not lawfully made and acquired" under the U.S. Copyright Act, if the educational institution "knew or had reason to believe" that they were not lawfully made and acquired. (http://www.ala.org/Template.cfm?Section=distanceed)

For example, no media of any sort (print, audio, or video) should be uploaded from “pirated” copies of the material. Nor should anyone be scanning and uploading substantial portions of textbooks or other instructional materials that are intended for each student to purchase.

The presentations listed below were generated in a series of workshops on Intellectual Property for Teaching and Learning. They briefly introduce the topics of copyright and fair use. The first has been revised in consideration of the 2009 update to the University's Copyright Policy.

Intellectual Property for Teaching and Learning (ppt)

Intellectual Property Law (ppt)
 

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LINKS

  • Center for Social Media  & Social Impact - The Center for Social Media & Social Impact showcases and analyzes strategies to use media as creative tools for public knowledge and action. It focuses on social documentaries for civil society and democracy, and on the public media environment that supports them. The Center is part of the School of Communication at American University.
  • Copyright, Distance Education, & Intellectual Property - A subsection of the "Issues in Higher Education" portion of the AAUP website.
  • Copyright Slide Rule - An interactive tool produced by the ALA Office of Information Technology to help you determine if a given piece of intellectual property is still under copyright or if it has come into the Public Domain.
  • Copyright Quiz - This twenty-question quiz on Copyright and fair use provides useful feedback for each incorrect response.
  • Creative Commons - This nonprofit organization offers producers and consumers multiple alternative approaches to the "all rights reserved" of copyright.
  • Fair Use in the Copyright Act - The Doctrine of Fair Use has been explicitly and succinctly stated in Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act since its last major revision in 1976.
  • Know Your Copy Rights: Resources for Teaching Faculty - This collection of FAQs produced by the Association of Research Libraries offers clear answers to specific questions about Fair Use, both for face-to-face and online instruction.
  • Measuring Fair Use: The Four Factors - Here is an especially clear treatment of how judges would apply the four factors when attempting to determine if a give use was fair that is provided by the Stanford University Law Library.
  • Resource Packet on Orphan Works: Legal and Policy Issues for Research Libraries - This resource packet, produced by the Association of Research Libraries, provides general information concerning orphan works, the University of Michigan's Orphan Works Project, an FAQ, and a legal memorandum describing the legal issues associated with making orphan works digitally available.
  • Rules and Permissions for Audio-visual Media Copyright law and audio-visual materials - A section of the Copyright and Fair Use website from Brown University that deals specifically with audio-visual materials.
     

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT COPYRIGHT

Q: Does Rider University have an Intellectual Property Policy?
A: Yes. The full text of that policy can be found on p. 23 of the current Academic Policy Manual. The policy begins with the following statement of general principle: Rider University respects and values copyright law and Rider University students, faculty, and staff should understand and fully exercise their fair use right to copyrighted material.

Q: Who owns the syllabus, exams, homework assignments and other instructional materials associated with a course?
A: Unless the work was written under a contract as work for hire or the copyright has been transferred to another entity (e.g. a publisher), whoever put the materials into a fixed form (e.g. saved them as documents) owns the copyright. Copyright adheres automatically in original expression as soon as it is fixed in a tangible medium of expression.

Q: Is student work copyrighted?
A: Yes. Students hold the copyrights to works they create. Copyright adheres automatically in original expression as soon as it is fixed in a tangible medium of expression.

Q: Do I need permission to perform or display copyrighted work in a classroom?
A: No. Section 110, Paragraph 1, the Classroom Exception, allows you and your students to perform or display copyrighted work in the classroom.

Q: Can I copy and hand out to my students a chapter of a book or an article in a journal?
A: Fair use allows you to copy and handout small portions of copyrighted material. However, the fourth factor of the fair use doctrine requires that you consider the following: the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work. If you would never have required students to purchase the entire book or subscribe to the journal, then handing out a small portion would normally be fair—except for the fact that publishers are now selling books by the chapter and individual articles in journals, thereby complicating the consideration of the fourth factor.

Q: Can I load copyrighted materials online for students to access through Canvas?
A: The TEACH Act is intended to extend the “perform and display” rights of the “Classroom exception” to online instruction.  So, you can load into Canvas content in the same amounts that you would perform or display in a face to face class.

Q: Does the “Classroom exception” or the TEACH Act allow me to provide students with CDs or DVDs of copyrighted media so they can access the materials outside of class?
A: No. The “perform or display” rights of the “Classroom exception” and the TEACH Act do not authorize reproducing copyrighted materials and distributing them to students.

Q: Can materials I load into Canvas stay up for the entire course?
A: Yes.

Q: Is there a limit to how many times materials can be viewed or played in a course?
A: No.

Q: Can I use the same materials again in subsequent semesters?
A: Yes.